Fresno man with inoperable brain tumors crosses California Classic off bucket list

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For most of the riders crossing the finish line is a personal accomplishment, sometimes shared with friends, but for the Mikey Wheels Team, the achievement is important. (KFSN)

Bicyclists and runners are hitting the roads in huge numbers here in the Central Valley this weekend.

The California Classic combines a long bike ride with a half marathon, and a little more cowbell helped riders cross the finish line of the Classic's first event.

The bike ride wrapped up at Chukchansi Park after winding its way through the streets and even the freeways of Fresno and Clovis, and the fans came away impressed.

"I've seen lots of effort from all these guys and I think they're doing great," 10-year-old Wyatt Frazier said.

At the finish line, greeters handed out cheers, water and medals which will interlock with another medal you can earn in Sunday's half marathon.

For most of the riders crossing the finish line is a personal accomplishment, sometimes shared with friends, but for the Mikey Wheels Team, the achievement is important.

"It was awesome," Samantha Ruelas said. "We trained hard, and it paid off and we had fun, felt good."

But the California Classic weekend carries a little more importance for Samantha and Michael Ruelas, and 'Mikey Wheels' himself announced the reason right there on his jersey.

"My husband here was diagnosed with a couple of brain tumors, and we're just kind of doing some things on his bucket list for now and this is one of the major things and, tomorrow, we're running the half marathon," Samantha said.

They only started training for the double dose of endurance challenge a couple months ago. Doctors aren't sure what to do about the tumors, but for now, they say the cancer isn't terminal.

"But, obviously, it's not a great diagnosis to have two inoperable brain tumors, but we're just looking to whatever God's doing through this situation, just trust him and have fun," Michael said.

And 'Mikey Wheels' was all smiles with the long bike ride behind him, and the half marathon - and the rest of his life - ahead.
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